The Importance of Safety Training to Supplement Experience

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) reported two similar violations stemming from different companies in the Midwest. In both cases, employees were seriously injured as a result of unsafe power industrial vehicle (PIV) use. Connecticut Business & Industry Association (CBIA), first reported on the incident earlier this month. Representatives for the CBIA attribute these accidents to the machine operator’s lack of training. Both accidents totaled 7 violations and penalties of over $300,000.

One company, based out of Chicago, had failed to provide its employees with a PIV training refresher. OSHA requires PIV refreshers every 3 years and proper certification for use. The incident came as a result of a common, but avoidable, mistake that the company chose to overlook. The OSHA area director states, “This worker’s life-altering injuries could have been prevented if … had followed its own and federal safety regulations against employees riding improperly on moving powered industrial vehicles.” The area director then went on to say that PIV accidents are one of the most common workplace incidents and remain among OSHA’s top 10 most cited violations.

In the other case, a food packaging company out of Wisconsin saw their second violation within the past 6 months. After an inspection last November, OSHA cited the facility for poor lockout/tagout procedures when an employee was injured during routine maintenance. This incident, coupled with yet another training violation, resulted in heavy fines for the company. Robert Bonack, OSHA area director for this region, once again reiterated that it’s the employer’s responsibility to ensure that employees are trained in the use of PIV. Any injuries involving industrial vehicles fall back on to the employers for neglecting to provide workers with the knowledge and understanding of their tools.

It’s always important to train you employees on the necessary precautions when operating a powered industrial vehicle. Don’t make the mistake of putting your workers in danger.

Want to learn more about how you can keep your employees safe and avoid a fine. Take a look at our PIV training to make sure this never happens to you.